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Publication numberUS5397008 A
Publication typeGrant
Application numberUS 08/234,391
Publication dateMar 14, 1995
Filing dateApr 25, 1994
Priority dateApr 25, 1994
Fee statusLapsed
Publication number08234391, 234391, US 5397008 A, US 5397008A, US-A-5397008, US5397008 A, US5397008A
InventorsKenneth P. Glynn
Original AssigneeIdeal Ideas, Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Child resistant cap and safety collar ring
US 5397008 A
Abstract
The present invention is a container and closure device, which includes the container, a collar ring and a cap. The container has a neck, an open top and a horizontal retainer track for affixing a collar ring thereto. The collar ring has a circular inside wall with a horizontal track for attachment to the track of the container so as to be horizontally and freely rotatable thereabout. The collar ring also has a top with a ledge thereon for frictionally engaging and retaining a cap, and has at least one cut out on the ledge to permit a cap to be inserted and removed from the collar ring. The cap has semi-flexible walls and has at least one protrusion which corresponds to and has a geometry of adequate size to freely move through the cut outs of the ledge of the collar ring and, when the cap is so inserted and rotated, of adequate size and geometry to cause frictional engagement and to cause simultaneous rotation of the cap and the collar ring and to prevent removal of the cap from the collar ring, except when the cap and the collar ring are held separately and are rotated relative to one another such that the protrusions and the cut outs are in alignment for lift up removal of the cap from the collar ring.
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Claims(16)
What is claimed is:
1. A container and closure device therefor, which comprises:
(a) a container having a neck, an open top and a horizontal retainer track thereon, adapted to receive and rotatably affix a collar ring thereto;
(b) a collar ring having a circular inside wall with a horizontal track thereon for attachment to the track of said container so as to connect said collar ring to said container so as to be horizontally and freely rotatable thereabout, said collar ring also having a top with a ledge thereon for frictionally engaging and retaining a cap, said ledge forming a horizontal track thereon for rotation of at least one protrusion of a cap to be rotated therein when said frictional engagement is overcome, and said ledge having at least one cut out on said ledge to permit a cap to be inserted and removed from said collar ring; and,
(c) a snap on cap having semi-flexible walls and having at least one protrusion which corresponds to and has a geometry of adequate size to freely move through said at least one cut out of said ledge of said collar ring and to be rotatable within said track of said collar ring when said frictional engagement is overcome, and such that when said cap is inserted and rotated, said at least one protrusion also being of adequate size and geometry to cause frictional engagement and to cause simultaneous rotation of said cap and said collar ring and to prevent removal of said cap from said collar ring, except when said cap and said collar ring are held separately and are rotated relative to one another such that said at least one protrusion and said at least one cut out are in alignment for lift up removal of said cap from said collar ring.
2. The device of claim 1 wherein said ledge of said collar ring is biased inwardly relative to said circular inside wall of said collar ring and wherein said at least one protrusion of said cap is biased outwardly relative to said semi-flexible walls of said cap, and said cap fits on the inside of said collar ring and fits over said open top and outside of at least a portion of said neck of said container.
3. The device of claim 1 wherein said ledge of said collar ring has two cut outs thereon.
4. The device of claim 3 wherein said cut outs are directly opposite one another.
5. The device of claim 3 wherein said cut outs are not directly opposite one another.
6. The device of claim 1 wherein said ledge of said collar ring is biased outwardly relative to said circular inside wall of said collar ring and wherein said at least one protrusion of said cap is biased inwardly relative to said semi-flexible walls of said cap and said cap fits on the outside of said collar ring and fits over said open top and outside of at least a portion of said neck of said container.
7. The device of claim 1 wherein said ledge of said collar ring has at least three cut outs thereon.
8. The device of claim 7 wherein said cut outs are symmetrically arranged.
9. The device of claim 7 wherein said cut outs are non-symmetrically arranged.
10. The device of claim 1 wherein at least one of said ledge and said at least one protrusion is sufficiently flexible so as to permit insertion of said cap without alignment of said at least one protrusion and said at least one cut out, and is sufficiently inflexible so as to prevent removal of said cap from said collar ring, except when said at least one protrusion and said at least one cut out are in alignment.
11. The device of claim 2 wherein said ledge has at least two cut outs thereon.
12. The device of claim 11 wherein said at least two cut outs are symmetrically arranged.
13. The device of claim 11 wherein said at least two cut outs are non-symmetrically arranged.
14. The device of claim 1 wherein the surface of the ring which has frictional contact with the surface of the cap and the surface of the cap which has frictional contact with the ring has non-smooth surfaces.
15. The device of claim 2 wherein the surface of the ring which has frictional contact with the surface of the cap and the surface of the cap which has frictional contact with the ring has non-smooth surfaces.
16. The device of claim 6 wherein the surface of the ring which has frictional contact with the surface of the cap and the surface of the cap which has frictional contact with the ring has non-smooth surfaces.
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to child resistant caps, and more particularly to single caps with safety rings for tubes, bottles and other capped containers.

2. Information Disclosure Statement

Safety caps have been well known for at least three decades and literally come in many hundreds of shapes and forms with diverse mechanisms for achieving safety. The objective of such devices is to slow down or prevent the opening of a dispenser by a child to ultimately reduce or prevent use of a medication or dangerous or hazardous material by a young child who may unwittingly consume some of the contents and suffer severe consequences. The following patents represent four variations on safety caps which exemplify the art:

U.S. Pat. No. 3,703,974 to Leo Boxer and Robert Boxer describes a safety cap and container combination wherein the container mouth includes a plurality of spaced ribs or flanges, each having a differently located, notched out passageway over which a cap member having at least one projecting internal lug is positioned in a single movement to close the container. In one form of the invention, a bead at the rim of the container mouth may be provided to mate with an internal groove in the cap member to seal tightly the cap member to the container. In order to remove the cap member, it is moved partially away from the container to disengage the bead from the groove and the lug member is then positioned and aligned with each slot and advanced therethrough in successive fashion to open the mouth of the container.

U.S. Pat. No. 3,782,578 to Gene Ballin sets forth a novel disposable closure. The device includes an opener for opening a closure cap along a score line around the base of an annular channel without piercing the cap. It includes a collar which rotatably and slidably engages the cap and includes a peripheral wall provided with circumferentially spaced depending arcuate teeth of greater thickness than the channel and stop elements which limit the downward movement of the device on the cap. The device is pressed downwardly and rotated so that the teeth wedge between and spread the channel walls to sever the closure along the full length of the score line. The piercing of the channel by the teeth is prevented by the stop elements.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,095,718 to Cheung Tung Kong describes a convertible safety cap. A cap is provided for closing a container having a locking portion for use in a precautionary arrangement to prevent children from obtaining access into the container. The cap is convertible so as to cooperate with such a container to provide not only such a precautionary arrangement but also an alternative easy opening arrangement. The invention includes a cap, an annular disk and a locking rim with notches through which tabs on the cap may pass.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,361,243 to Risto Virtinen describes a closing means for a container, tube or the like. This device is a closing means for a nozzle which is fixably mounting on a container or for a tube or the like. The closing means is openable when turned into a predetermined position which is indicated by indicators provided on the closing means and on the container. It is settable diametrically opposite to each other, and characterized in that the lower rim of the closing means or the upper rim of the container is provided with a separate background ring extending at least partially behind the indicator of the closing means and the indicator of the container.

Notwithstanding the significant prior art in this field, it is believed that the present invention, which utilizes a safety collar (outer ring) in the particular fashion described herein, is neither taught nor rendered obvious.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is a container closure device, which includes a container, a collar ring and a cap. The container has a neck, an open top and a horizontal retainer track thereon for affixing a collar ring thereto. The collar ring has a circular inside wall with a horizontal track thereon for attachment to the track of the container so as to be horizontally and freely rotatable thereabout. The collar ring also has a top with a ledge thereon for frictionally engaging and retaining a cap, and has at least one cut out on the ledge to permit a cap to be inserted and removed from the collar ring. The cap has semi-flexible walls and has at least one protrusion which corresponds to and has a geometry of adequate size to freely move through the cut outs of the ledge of the collar ring and, when the cap is so inserted and rotated, of adequate size and geometry to cause frictional engagement and to cause simultaneous rotation of the cap and the collar ring and to prevent removal of the cap from the collar ring, except when the cap and the collar ring are held separately and are rotated relative to one another such that the protrusions and the cut outs are in alignment for lift up removal of the cap from the collar ring.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The present invention will be more fully understood when the specification herein is taken in conjunction with the drawings appended hereto, wherein:

FIGS. 1 and 2 show a cut front view and a bottom view, respectively, of a cap of a present invention container closure device;

FIGS. 3 and 4 show a front cut view and a top view of a collar ring used with the cap shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 shows a front cut view of the cap of FIGS. 1 and 2 with the collar ring of FIGS. 3 and 4 attached to a container; and,

FIG. 6 shows a cut front view of an alternative embodiment cap, ring and container of a present invention device.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is a container closure device. It includes a container with at least one retainer track, a collar ring and an inner cap. The container has a top portion with a circular horizontal retainer track thereon for attachment of the collar ring to the container. The ring is circular with a horizonal track on its inside wall for attachment to the retainer track of the container so as to connect them in such a way as to be freely horizontally rotatable thereabout, but otherwise permanently connected to one another. The collar ring also has a top with an inwardly or outwardly biased ledge for retaining the cap and has at least one cut out and preferably more than one cut out on the ledge to permit the cap to be inserted and removed from the collar ring. The cap has a circular bottom adapted to be inserted into or onto the ring and over the top of the container mechanism. The bottom of the cap has at least one protrusion which corresponds to and has a geometry of adequate size to freely move through the cut out of the ledge of the collar ring. When the cap is inserted and rotated, both the cap and the ring move together due to intentional friction caused by the tight fit between the cap and ring. In preferred embodiments, the surface of the cap which contacts the ring and/or the surface of the ring which contacts the cap is intentionally formed with non-smooth surfaces such as rough surface molding, cross-hatch surface molding or shallow seration molding. In order to remove the cap, the ring and cap must be rotated relative to one another so that the protrusion is aligned with the cut out. In preferred embodiments, the ledge of the ring has adequate flexibility to allow the cap to be pushed down without alignment of the protrusion and the cut out, but not to be removed unless alignment is first provided.

FIG. 1 shows a front cut view of a present invention container closure device cap 1 and FIG. 2 shows a bottom view thereof. As can be seen, cap 1 includes a top portion 3 and a sidewall 5 with an open bottom 7. Cap 1 further includes a recess 9 in top 3 to permit spacing for a foil seal or other seal for conventional medicine cap-type seal. There is a shoulder 11 which will be discussed in more detail with respect to FIG. 5. Additionally, there are shown three different protrusions 13, 15 and 23 (FIG. 2). Protrusion 15 has a tapered bottom 21 as do the other protrusions to allow tap 1 to be easily snapped onto a collar ring but not easily removed therefrom. Thus, protrusion 15 has tapered portion 21, vertical flat 19 and horizontal flat 17. This would be typical of one type of protrusion in preferred embodiments of the present invention.

Referring now to FIGS. 3 and 4 there are shown a front cut view and a top view collar ring 31. Collar ring 31 includes side wall 33 and shoulder 35, as well as a ledge 39. This ledge 39 acts in conjunction with shoulder 35 to frictionally lock with the ledges of cap 1. Also, top rim 41 of collar ring 3 seals with the underside of top 3 of cap 1. Further, as can be seen from the top view in FIG. 4, shoulder 35 protrudes beyond ledge 37 and this enables frictional contact with cap 1, as well as non-removable but rotational attachment to a container. It is the combination of upper ledge 43, protrusion 34 and underside 32 which constitutes a horizontal track within collar ring 31 for attachment to a container as described below. There is at least one cut out and, in this case, three cut outs 45, 47 and 49 of different sizes and arranged in a non-symmetrical manner so as to align with the protrusions of cap 1 in only a single orientation.

Referring to FIG. 5, there is shown the cap of FIGS. 1 and 2 and the ring collar of FIGS. 3 and 4 with identical parts being identically numbered, along with container 61. Container 61 includes sidewall 63 with neck 59 and protrusions 65 and 67 so as to create a horizontal track thereabout shown as track 66. While track 66 is indented on container 61 and track 34 is protruding on the inside collar ring 31, they could be-reversed without exceeding the scope of the present invention. There is an open top 69 to container 61 and collar ring 31 has been snapped onto container 61 so as to be non-removably attached thereto but freely rotatable thereabout. This is because inwardly tapered portion 68 allows collar ring 31 to pass over tapered ledge 67 but flat surface 70 does not permit collar ring 31 to be removed therefrom. Thus, collar ring 31 is freely rotatable but non-removable. Cap 1 has been snapped onto collar ring 21, as shown, and due to the tapered surfaces such as tapered wall 21 of protrusion 15, cap 1 can easily slide over the tapered edge 72 of collar ring 31 but cannot be removed therefrom. Further, because of the tight fit between protrusion 15 and ledge 37, there is frictional engagement of cap 1 with collar ring 31 so that when either collar ring 31 or cap 1 is rotated, the other will rotate along with it. On the other hand, if a user holds cap 1 with one hand and holds collar ring 31 with the other hand and rotates cap 1 relative to collar ring 31, as, for example, by virtue of alignment rings such as ring 50, alignment 51 shown in FIG. 4, then the protrusions 13, 15 and 23 will be in alignment with cut outs 47, 49 and 45 respectively so that cap 1 can then be lifted up and easily removed from collar ring 31. Thus, by virtue of the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 through 5, the present invention device will be child resistant and will also be friendly to people with dexterity difficulties such as arthritics due to the ease with which the frictional engagement of the cap and collar ring may be overcome for subsequent removal of the cap.

The above embodiment shows the horizontal track of the container being indented, as indicated, it could be a protrusion and the inward protrusion horizontal track of the collar could likewise be reversed so as to engage one another so that the collar ring could not be removed but could be freely rotated. Likewise, the protrusion on the cap could well be an indentation and the indentation created on the collar ring could be a protrusion, without exceeding the scope of the present invention. Also, the version shown in the above figures illustrates the cap being inserted into the collar ring by being snapped onto the outside of the collar ring. Conversely, the cap could be snapped into the inside of the collar ring without exceeding the scope of the present invention and one such embodiment is discussed below.

Referring now to FIG. 6, there is shown a front cut view of an alternative embodiment present invention device which includes cap 101, collar ring 131 and container 119. Here, cap 101 includes sidewall 103 and a top 105 along with a compression seal 107 such as is conventionally used in sealed caps such as a plasticized foam or foil insert. Cap 101 has a narrow portion 109, a widening taper 115 and a wider portion 117, as shown. Additionally, at its bottom 111, there is a protrusion 113 which, in this case, is biased outwardly. This fits under horizontal track 130 of collar ring 131, as shown and there will be at least one and preferably more than one cut out in ledge 135 thereof. In other words, as shown in the figure, there is an arrangement similar to that in FIG. 5 but reversed and slightly different. In this case, the container 119, with its sidewall 123, shoulder 125 and horizontal track 127 protruding outwardly, also has a tapering portion 129 and an open end top 121. The friction between the underside of ledge 135 against protrusion 113 as well as the friction between top 125 and the underside of top 105 causes frictional engagement between collar ring 131 and cap 101. Horizontal track 127 of container 119 receives collar ring 131 so that horizontal track 132 of collar ring 131 is non-removably but rotatably engaged therewith. Thus, a user will separately hold collar ring 131 and cap 101 and rotate them relative to one another to align the protrusions such as protrusion 113 with cut outs in ledge 135 for lift up removal of cap 101 from container 119 without removing collar ring 133.

Obviously, numerous modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. It is therefore understood that within the scope of the appended claims, the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described herein.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3450290 *Jun 19, 1968Jun 17, 1969Basic Products Dev CoSafety closure for a container
US3693820 *Jun 3, 1971Sep 26, 1972Linkletter Robert PSafety closure cap
US3703974 *Mar 8, 1971Nov 28, 1972Frank Eli CSafety cap
US3782578 *Apr 28, 1972Jan 1, 1974Ballin GOpener for disposable closure
US3850327 *Feb 5, 1973Nov 26, 1974Robinson EChild-proof container closure
US4095718 *Aug 25, 1977Jun 20, 1978Cheung Tung KongConvertible safety cap
US4121727 *Feb 6, 1978Oct 24, 1978Mark Iv Industries, Inc.Vial construction having safety closure
US4361243 *May 19, 1981Nov 30, 1982Perlos OyClosing means for a container, tube or the like
US4399921 *Apr 9, 1982Aug 23, 1983Owens-Illinois, Inc.Child resistant closure and container
US5316162 *Nov 13, 1992May 31, 1994Pierson Industries, Inc.Universally adaptable childproof cap
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5520305 *Mar 29, 1995May 28, 1996Pierson Industries, Inc.Container and two piece safety cap having a locking collar and cover
US5577624 *Jun 3, 1995Nov 26, 1996Mcneil-Ppc, Inc.Child resistant easy open closure mechanism
US5593054 *Apr 28, 1995Jan 14, 1997Ideal Ideas, Inc.Child resistant flip cap with collar
US5634496 *Jan 29, 1996Jun 3, 1997Teledyne Industries, Inc.Collapsible tube
US5657905 *Aug 28, 1995Aug 19, 1997Ideal Ideas, Inc.Child resistant safety cap with collar and semi-flexible tether for sprayers
US5727704 *Jul 23, 1996Mar 17, 1998Ideal Ideas, Inc.Child resistant cap and safety collar ring having unique boss arrangements
US5752604 *Oct 18, 1996May 19, 1998Hayman; Walter B.Pill container
US5788098 *Jan 23, 1997Aug 4, 1998Mader; Stanley C.Child resistant container closure system with locking ring, hook element, and cap
US5791504 *Aug 19, 1996Aug 11, 1998Magenta CorporationChild resistant container
US5826738 *Jun 24, 1997Oct 27, 1998Minh; Do LeChild-restraint combination of a container and a one-piece closure
US5927529 *Dec 31, 1997Jul 27, 1999Magenta CorporationChild resistant container
Classifications
U.S. Classification215/225, 215/206, 215/223
International ClassificationB65D50/06
Cooperative ClassificationB65D50/062
European ClassificationB65D50/06B2
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
May 13, 2003FPExpired due to failure to pay maintenance fee
Effective date: 20030314
Mar 14, 2003LAPSLapse for failure to pay maintenance fees
Mar 11, 1999SULPSurcharge for late payment
Mar 11, 1999FPAYFee payment
Year of fee payment: 4
Oct 6, 1998REMIMaintenance fee reminder mailed
Apr 25, 1994ASAssignment
Owner name: IDEAL IDEAS, INC., NEW JERSEY
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:GLYNN, KENNETH P.;REEL/FRAME:006976/0021
Effective date: 19940425